Prof. h.c. Dr. Dr. h.c. Heinz Dreyer celebrated his 80th birthday

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On the 19th February, 2012  Prof. h. c. (SAA Samara) Dr. Dr. h. c. Heinz Dreyer, Hasbergen, celebrated his 80th birthday. As the eldest son of Dipl.-Ing. Heinrich Dreyer, successor of the founder of Amazonen-Werke, his father nominated him at an early stage to take over the business. After passing his graduation exams at high school in Osnabrück, he completed apprenticeship courses at Stahlwerk (steel mill) Georgsmarienhütte, at Messrs. Heinrich Lanz in Mannheim and at Bavarian Leichtmetallwerke (light metal). After having completed his diploma at the Technical University of Munich (today TU Munich), he continued to be a freelance specialist at the university with a research contract at the Federal Ministry of Agriculture.

However, his doctorate plans were thwarted when is father suddenly died in November, 1957. Heinz Dreyer immediately joined Amazonen-Werke and at the beginning of 1958 he took over the management of the company together with his cousin Klaus Dreyer. Apart from the urgent need for the expansion of the company, Heinz Dreyer again tackled his doctoral theses and in 1963 he graduated at the Justus-Liebig-University Gießen. From the entrepreneurial point of view, the future orientated direction of the company was very much dear to his heart. As the one responsible for the product development division, Heinz Dreyer developed, from 1958 onwards, machines for crop production resulting in the ZA series, an innovative fertilising technology with three point linkage mounted twin disc spreaders. Also under his guidance, the conventional D4...D9 seed drills were designed. Both spreader and drill resulted in huge market success and became benchmarks across Europe. Actually Heinz Dreyer is still engaged in crop production in the Russian arid areas. An innovative conservation sowing technology that utilised chisel openers was developed and was brought to market maturity. More than 300 patents derived from his work.

Heinz Dreyer has received many honours. In Russia, he was appointed a member of the “International Academy for Agricultural Education“. As a scientific consultant at the Governmental Academy Samara, he was made an honorary professor of this university. Due to his merits in scientific research and development in the field of agricultural technology, he was awarded in 2005 an honorary doctorate from the Hohenheim University.

In 2008 he was awarded the Silver Order of Merit from the Agricultural Ministry of the Russian Federation. This honour was “for his great personal drive in the development of the agri-industry complex in Russia and for the successful mutual co-operation between the Russian Federation and the Federal Republic of Germany“. On 19th May, 2009 Heinz Dreyer was awarded the Medal of Honour of the Verein Deutscher Ingenieure (VDI) for his life’s work. In this way, the VDI honoured his research and development activities, especially in the sectors of sowing & fertilising technology and electronics which Dreyer has consistently dominated.